Wichita selected as host city for 2019 Navy Week

May 30, 2019

The Navy the nation needs is coming to the Great Plains for Navy Week in late summer.  Sailors from across the United States will be in Wichita and Hutchinson, Kan., Sept. 9-15.

Navy Weeks are the service’s signature outreach program and allow the Navy to build and strengthen ties to the community.  Wichita Navy Week is scheduled to feature:

  • Senior Navy leadership
  • Sailors from the newly commissioned USS Wichita (LCS 13)
  • Sailors from the oldest warship afloat, USS Constitution
  • Sailors from Coastal Riverine Group (CRG) 1
  • Navy Band performances
  • Ceremonial Guard Drill Team performances
  • An exhibit by Naval History and Heritage Command
  • Local recruiters and U.S. Naval Academy admissions representatives
  • Office of Small Business Programs symposium

In addition to events throughout greater Wichita, Navy units plan to participate in the Kansas State Fair during the week, including patriotic and veterans’ events on 9/11.

Since 2005, the Navy Week program has served as the Navy’s primary outreach effort into areas of the country which do not have a significant Navy presence, with more than 230 Navy Weeks held in more than 75 different U.S. markets.

“Navy Weeks are designed to help Americans understand why having a strong Navy is critical to the American way of life,” said Cmdr. Linda Rojas, director of the Navy Office of Community Outreach (NAVCO), which plans and executes the Navy Week program.  “Because the Navy is concentrated primarily in select locations on both coasts, we’re challenged to communicate our mission away from fleet concentration areas.  That’s where the Navy Week program comes in.”

Navy Weeks focus a variety of outreach assets, equipment and personnel on a single city for a week-long series of engagements with key influencers and organizations representing all sectors of the market.

“During a Navy Week, we coordinate about 75 outreach events with corporate, civic, government, education, media, veterans, community service and diversity organizations in the city,” said Lt. John Stevens, NAVCO Navy Week program manager.  “The 2019 schedule has been exciting for us.  We ventured outside the continental U.S. for the first time in our program’s history with Puerto Rico Navy Week, and we’re taking the program to new places like Grand Junction, Colorado, and Wichita.”

“Our Executive Outreach program has gone to Wichita twice in the past four years, and the community still remembers those visits,” Stevens added.  “It’s the perfect time for our first-ever Wichita Navy Week.”

Stevens said retired Rear Adm. Jeffrey Penfield came to Wichita in 2016 for an executive engagement visit, and Rear Adm. Ron Fritzemeier visited in 2018.

For more information on Navy Weeks and the 2019 schedule, visit http://outreach.navy.mil/Navy-Weeks-2019/.